Ask Liz: How are the presidential race polls calculated? -- Gazette.Net


NBC 4 consumer reporter Liz Crenshaw surveyed her sources for the best response.

Question: How are the presidential race polls calculated? And how are the people polled selected?

Answer: We turned to Gallup (which conducts public opinion polls) for this answer. It says that it surveys thousands of households in the US through random phone interviews. The phone numbers are chosen through a random computer generated landline and cell phone directory. Only adults over the age 18 living in the household can be interviewed and the pollsters ask for the person with the most recent birthday to help keep the poll random. And the typical sample size for a Gallup poll is about 1,000 adults so all adults with a working phone number having an equal chance of getting called.

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